Starbucks (SBUX) and Alibaba (BABA) confirmed they will join to deliver Starbucks products in China. Starbucks will collaborate across key businesses within the Alibaba ecosystem, including Ele.me, Hema, Tmall, Taobao and Alipay to meet its goals.
Working with Alibaba unit Ele.me, Starbucks will pilot deliveries in September in 150 stores located in key trade zones in Beijing and Shanghai with plans to accelerate and expand its delivery program to more than 2,000 Starbucks stores across 30 cities by the end of calendar year 2018.
Starbucks also will partner with Hema supermarkets to be the first retail brand to establish dedicated “Starbucks Delivery Kitchens” within their locations to complement the delivery of handcrafted Starbucks coffee and tea beverages offered through existing Starbucks stores. Starbucks will open “Starbucks Delivery Kitchens” in selected Hema supermarkets in Shanghai and Hangzhou as soon as September 2018, with plans to expand its presence to other cities over time.
Alibaba will develop a centralized online management hub, to integrate and deliver a consistent Starbucks Experience across multiple digital platforms.